It was the ninth time Molina has won the award in his career but was his first time winning since 2015. Buster Posey of the Giants and Tucker Barnhart of the Reds had been the winners the last two seasons.
The Cardinals’ other finalist for the award, second baseman Kolten Wong, lost out to Colorado’s D.J. LeMahieu.
The nine Gold Gloves put Molina third on the all-time list for catchers, trailing only Pudge Rodriguez, who won the award 13 times, and Johnny Bench, a 10-time winner.
Molina also moved into a tie with Bob Gibson for the most Gold Gloves at any position in Cardinals’ history, trailing only 13-time winner Ozzie Smith.
This has been a banner post-season for the 36-year-old Molina, who also won the Roberto Clemente Award, presented by Major League Baseball to a player in recognition of his humanitarian service.
Molina topped Posey and Milwaukee’s Manny Pina in the balloting by National League managers and coaches. There also is a portion of the selection based on a sabermetric defensive ranking.
In 121 games behind the plate this year, Molina was charged with just eight errors in 1,010 chances. He also threw out 12 of 39 runners attempting to steal, and the 27 stolen bases were the fewest allowed by Molina since 2014.
The total of 39 attempted steals while Molina was catching equaled the lowest of his career. He also had just 39 attempts against him in 2005.